Courtesy of the artist and Ideal Audience International, Paris; Galerie Chantal Crousel, Paris; Esther Schipper, Berlin; Galerie Rüdiger Schöttle, Munich
Yugoslavia, how ideology moved our collective body by Marta Popivoda (2013, 62min, Serbia / France / Germany) / VO Serbian and English with English and Greek subtitles
Time and address:
TAVROS Anaxagora 33 (1st floor), Tavros
In collaboration with:
In the process of moving house with his family, Anri Sala, an Albanian art student, discovered a twenty-year-old 16mm newsreel film, containing images of a congress of the Albanian Communist Party. In the film a young woman, a leader of the Communist Youth Alliance, is seen making a speech, and later giving an interview. But the sound had been lost.
With the passing of years this woman had left behind the hopes and fears, ideals and disappointments, deceptions and rebellions of her youth. She was his mother.
Sala cannot find any of the original sound, or anyone who remembers what his mother actually said so he takes the film to a school for the deaf in Tirana, and with the help of lip readers, his mother’s words are deciphered.
Intervista dramatically captures the moment when Sala shows his mother and confronts her younger self. Her Communist ideals and the current chaos in Albania collide, offering a moving opportunity for reflection on the country’s -and one woman’s-history and present state.
Anri Sala (1974, Tirana; lives and works in Berlin)
Working in film, photography, and performance, Anri Sala investigates ruptures in language, syntax, and music, inviting creative dislocations, which generate new interpretations of history, supplanting old fictions and narratives with less-explicit, more-nuanced dialogues. His first video Intervista was presented at the Albanian Pavilion of the Venice Biennale (1999). Since then Anri Sala has been awarded a number of prizes, and his work has been the subject of solo exhibitions in museums and galleries such as the New Museum, New York (2016); Haus der Kunst, Munich (2014); Centre Pompidou, Paris (2012); Serpentine Gallery, London (2011); Museum of Contemporary Art North Miami (2008); and Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris (2004). He has also participated in major group exhibitions and biennials internationally, such as documenta 13 (2012), São Paulo Biennial (2010), and Berlin Biennale (2006). In 2013, he represented France in the 55th Venice Biennale.
Yugoslavia, how ideology moved our collective body deals with the question of how ideology performs itself in public space through mass performances. The author collected and analyzed ﬁlm and video footage from the period of Yugoslavia (1945 – 2000), focusing on state performances (youth work actions, May Day parades, celebrations of the Youth Day) as well as counter-demonstrations (’68, student and civic demonstrations in the ‘90s, 5th October Revolution). Going back through the images, the film traces how communist ideology was gradually exhausted through the changing relations between the people, ideology, and the state.
“This research-based essay ﬁlm is a very personal perspective on the history of socialist Yugoslavia, its dramatic end, and its recent transformation into a few democratic nation-states. Experience of the dissolution of the state, and today’s “wild” capitalist reestablishment of the class system in Serbia are my reasons for going back through the media images and tracing the way one social system changed by performing itself in public space”. Marta Popivoda
Marta Popivoda (1982, Serbia)
Marta Popivoda is a filmmaker, artist and researcher. Her work explores tensions between memory and history, collective and individual bodies, as well as ideology and everyday life, with a focus on antifascist and feminist potentialities of the Yugoslav socialist project. She cherishes collective practice in art-making and research, and for several years has been part of the TkH (Walking Theory) collective. Marta Popivoda’s first feature documentary, Yugoslavia, How Ideology Moved Our Collective Body, premiered at the 63rd Berlinale and was later screened at many international film festivals. The film is part of the permanent collection of MoMA New York, and it’s featured in What Is Contemporary Art?, MoMA’s online course about contemporary art from 1980 to the present. Her work has also featured in major art galleries, such as Tate Modern, London; M HKA, Antwerp and Museum of Contemporary Art, Ljubljana. Her new feature documentary Landscapes of Resistance (2021) was internationally screened (including at Thessaloniki International Documentary Festival – Film Forward Competition Award).